Though I've been exploring Catholicism for the past two years, I recently came to a point where I felt that I needed to take action on it. I've decided that, over the summer, I will decide on a local parish to join, and start attending their RCIA (Rite of Catholic Initiation for Adults) class in the fall — meaning I would be confirmed and welcomed in to the Church at Easter next year, assuming all follows the usual schedule. Many people have recommend joining RCIA, even if I don't end up joining the Church, to really understand the entirety of what's going on.
I'm writing this not just to tell the world (aka the three people who'll read this. Hi, Mom.) about my decision, but also because I wanted to be sure that I wasn't just going by feelings. Writing out my reasoning has helped me, in the past, show myself that I've actually got a solid, logical reason for my actions.
I was originally going to put these down in the order that I came up with them, but I've since sorted them to be in the order I would use if I had to explain it in person.
As lazy as it might sound on the surface, this really is my best point. When telling people I was considering becoming Catholic, they'd frequently respond with something that the believe is wrong about the Catholic faith. These reasons either end up being completely bosh, like some anti-Catholic propaganda which has been making the rounds for the past 500 years, or legitimate concerns based on misunderstandings of how the Church functions.
I do enjoy a bit of apologetics here and there, and I do like to debate a point, if the other party is willing. So many times, people will just turn their backs once they realize that they don’t have an argument. (I’m looking at you, r/Christianity and r/TrueChristian subreddits.) If one is willing to put aside their incorrect assumptions or intentional bogative misinformation and listen to my reasoning, then I would actually be able to follow with...
What if the Church is in fact the way Christ set things up?
The more research I do, the more it seems that the Catholic Church is, in fact, the church that Jesus set up, running the way He wanted rather than some modification of it to suit earthly desires. More rules, organization, and structure wouldn’t necessarily be on my wish list, but the combination of Tradition, it being the way things are meant to be, and the fact that I’m a pretty lazy person if there’s no framework for me to follow (Hello, Sunday obligation!) has caused me to realize that I’ll be able to develop a better relationship with the Trinity from within the Catholic Church.
Suggested reading: The Didache
This video is also a good 8-minute rundown on the topic
Sola Scriptura is doesn't make sense
Nearly all of the arguments against the Catholic Church require sola scriptura, one of the key points used at the beginning of the Reformation. Sola scriptura makes zero sense to me, because the Bible doesn't say it! When I’ve asked Protestants, “Why can’t we do x?” (x being something done in the Catholic Church and not in their church) they usually respond with the sola scriptura argument. So, so, so many of the arguments I've been presented with against Catholicism have boiled down to, "The Bible doesn't say we should do it", and that's a strange, lazy argument if you ask me. If sola scriptura is actually something we should adhere to, one would expect it to be in the Bible!
A meme sharable graphic with text I made a while back:
Current status: pic.twitter.com/Lok0NDO7Uz— Levi Breederland (@Levisan) 18 November 2016
The Catholic Church is aesthetically satisfying
Especially the more traditional stuff! When it comes to Church art, music, and architecture, the Catholic Church (as a whole; there are some exceptions) is so beautiful. The only thing that comes close would be the Anglican Church, but as people have said to me, "if you're going to become Anglican, why not go all the way and become Catholic?" In the end, this isn’t a great reason (if it weren’t for the other ones), but there’s something that has to be said about how hard it is to get in the right frame of mind inside a brutalist cement box.
When I put two and two together, understanding that there's really no reason to avoid the Catholic Church, and a myriad of things ranging from pet peeves to major points of worry about many, if not all, of the thousands of Protestant denominations, I got a profound realization that, for the best possible relationship with God, I should join the Catholic Church.